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After more than 170 years, including an aborted effort by Thomas Edison, the electric car finally

seems poised for a major breakthrough. Every major car company has either launched an electric
caralso known as an electric vehicle, or is working on one. For the environmental sustainability
community, this is very good news, as the EV could greatly reduce greenhouse gases and other
pollutants .The potential of an electric cars virtues had been underestimated then and still continues
to be.
It will not be the magic bullet to end all environmental problems, but could represent a huge advance
on the road to sustainability. With development and growth taking place every single day around the
world technologies are bound to be developed that may actually make electric cars sustainable in the
future. We have already begun working towards the concept of electric car viability and you will get to
see a clearer picture as I present my supporting evidence before you.

Two books celebrating the EV have appeared recently. James Billmaiers Jolt! The Impending
Dominance of the Electric Car (Advantage Media Group, 2010) reads almost like an extended
advertisement touting the wonders of EVs. Relatively short, clearly written, and with plenty of
graphics, the book effectively argues the many virtues of EVs but is uncritical of possible problems.
Seth Fletchers Bottled Lightning: Superbatteries, Electric Cars, and the New Lithium Economy (Hill
and Wang, 2011) is more detailed, telling the story behind the development of lithium ion batteries,
the key to making the EV economically viable. For a book this technical, even wonkish, its a superb
read, replete with anecdotes about fascinating scientific breakthrough, business missteps, and brutal
competition.
As both works convey, the electric engine is superior to the gas enginecleaner, quieter, easier to
start, cheaper to run, with fewer moving parts to repairin all ways but one. The electric engine runs
only a limited number of miles before needing a long recharge process. The gasoline engine can be
instantly filled up, meaning no irritating delays. It is this fact that killed the EV in Thomas Edisons
time and has restrained it ever since.[i]
The first point that I would like to present in support of my stance is the development of Lithium ion
batteries. What has changed is the arrival of the lithium ion battery, which has revolutionized
electronics, notably the cell phone, and is now being used in EVs. Of course, a far larger, more
powerful battery is needed than for electronics, so the trick is to scale it up. The car company that
pioneered lithium ion in automobiles, and spurred interest among the majors, is Tesla. The two cars
currently at the forefront of giving a tough competition to the gasoline engine vehicles are the Chevy
Volt and Nissan Leaf, and they take different approaches. The Leaf is 100% EV, meaning that its
ideal for a local car but questionable for long trips. Still, its range of nearly 100 miles between
charges makes it viable for most situations. The Volt has both an electric and gas component; for up
to a 40 mile range its all electric, at which point the gas kicks in to power the engine. It remains to be
seen which model will dominate the electric market, or whether they will coexist.
The second point that I would like to put forward is related to the concept of pollution. The EV is
clean, but the electricity that feeds the EV comes largely from traditional, dirty power plants fueled

by coal. Wont that make it even dirtier than the gasoline engine? The answer is no, but its
complicated. Total emissions depend on two factors: the energy mix powering the grid and engine
efficiency. Electric engines are extremely efficient, while gasoline engines are extremely inefficient.
Billmaier shows how a gasoline engine can be as little as 10% efficient when one adds up idling
time, braking, and, most important, engine losses. An electric engine, by contrast, can get the
equivalent of 150 miles per gallon of gasoline. Regarding the energy mix, currently some 41% of
world electricity came from coal, the dirtiest source, with 33% coming from sources that dont emit
greenhouse gases: nuclear, hydro, and renewable (Waterloo Global Science Initiative). Calculating
the actual savings in an EV is difficult, since it depends on an array of shifting factors. One blogger
argues that, with our current energy mix, gasoline engines produce 21 to 58% more CO 2 than do
electric (The Energy Blog, 2010). However, in countries with a large renewable and nuclear
component, notably in Western Europe, EVs will emit far fewer greenhouse gases. In countries that
use lots of coal, such as China, CO 2 emissions will be higher. In the long run, with renewable energy
likely to rise dramatically, EVs should be increasingly clean (ideally reaching 0 emissions should the
grid ever be 100% renewable).
Fuel cost , fuel usage, environmental sustainibily. Lithium ion waste , people will definitely realize the
need to shift over. The change in mentality
Third point electronic waste

I am a strong advocate of nuclear energy, and regard it as the only source of energy with the right
combinatorial optimization of safety, sustainability, ease of scale up, cost, and environmental impact - the
general public susceptibility to selective attention with respect to the these concerns notwithstanding - that
might have had any reasonable chance at providing a decent lifestyle for the 7 billion people on this
planet, almost all of whom assume their own right to life, and if not to liberty, than certainly to the pursuit
of happiness.
So where are we left when considering the environmental impact of EVS? Can they still be a solution the
growing demand for transportation and the increasing threats of pollution and global warming?I am
definitely sure that the world is bound to see greater growth with the implementation of EVs.

The EV is clean, but the electricity that feeds the EV comes largely from traditional, dirty power
plants fueled by coal. Wont that make it even dirtier than the gasoline engine? The answer is no, but
its complicated. Total emissions depend on two factors: the energy mix powering the grid and engine
efficiency. Electric engines are extremely efficient, while gasoline engines are extremely inefficient.
Billmaier shows how a gasoline engine can be as little as 10% efficient when one adds up idling
time, braking, and, most important, engine losses. An electric engine, by contrast, can get the
equivalent of 150 miles per gallon of gasoline. Regarding the energy mix, currently some 41% of
world electricity came from coal, the dirtiest source, with 33% coming from sources that dont emit
greenhouse gases: nuclear, hydro, and renewable (Waterloo Global Science Initiative). Calculating

the actual savings in an EV is difficult, since it depends on an array of shifting factors. One blogger
argues that, with our current energy mix, gasoline engines produce 21 to 58% more CO 2 than do
electric (The Energy Blog, 2010). However, in countries with a large renewable and nuclear
component, notably in Western Europe, EVs will emit far fewer greenhouse gases. In countries that
use lots of coal, such as China, CO 2 emissions will be higher. In the long run, with renewable energy
likely to rise dramatically, EVs should be increasingly clean (ideally reaching 0 emissions should the
grid ever be 100% renewable).
Yet another factor that should increase the efficiency of EVs is the fact that they will likely be charged
largely at night, when power is available but underutilized. Its impossible to power down our large
utilities, so much energy is wasted at night. Billmaier illustrates this well of untapped energy, which
could be stored in the batteries of electric cars. Going even further, an updated smart grid that
allowed cars to sell back energy at peak times and be charged when excess energy is available
would greatly improve efficiency (ProQuest, 2009). EVs could even become the long-sought storage
method for intermittent forms of renewable energy, notably wind and solar.
The books reviewed here do a superb job explaining the argument for why we need electric cars
today: climate change may soon be irreversible, hostile foreign governments control much oil, and
we may already have reached peak oil. Still, they tend to idealize the EV, overlooking some areas
that may make it less of the panacea than may first appear. And that will be the subject of next
weeks blog.

[i] Also out now is Revenge of the Electric Car, a sequel to filmmaker Chris Paines Who Killed the
Electric Car, about the destruction of General Motors EV1 in the 1990s. If the earlier movie
portrayed the auto companies as a selfish, treacherous lot, in Revenge of the Electric Car they, along
with smaller entrepreneurs, come across as heroic, even visionary.
As discussed last week, two books (James Billmaiers Jolt! The Impending Dominance of
the Electric Car and Seth Fletchers Bottled Lightning: Superbatteries, Electric Cars,
and the New Lithium Economy) show the great potential of the electric vehicle (EV) to take
over the automobile market and greatly alleviate an array of woes caused by our dependence on oil.
Yet they have some holes, and questions remain about the EVs viability.
One area of oversight in Billmaierand indeed in both worksis a strange neglect of global climate
change, with a focus instead on security and peak oil concerns. This mirrors Americas national
conversation, where, despite mountains of evidence, climate change is somehow not allowed to be a
central part of the conversation. Billmaier exemplifies this situation when he prefaces his brief
discussion of climate change with the note, If you dont find yourself with Al Gore . . . or youre just
sick of hearing about climate change in general, feel free to skip this chapter. I suppose this is one
tactic for dealing with the ascendancy of climate skepticism, but it only works when all of the other
factors also converge on the desired outcome. When the question becomes whether to increase our

use of coal or shale oil, for instance, the tactic of simply pretending climate change doesnt exist and
relying on other arguments will come back to hurt us.
Both works (as well as the movie Revenge of the Electric Car) also exaggerate the viability of electric
cars when it comes to rapidly replacing our existing fleet and satisfying drivers accustomed to instant
refills. Bottled Lightning is the most honestalthough only briefly and near the endabout the fact
that, even with lithium-ion batteries, the EV still takes several hours to recharge. This can be reduced
below twenty minutes with the highest level of quick charge station, but these are not practical as
they need to be powerful enough to deliver many megawatts quicklyto charge the Tesla in fifteen
minutes, for instance, takes a 200-kilowatt substation. A network of such stations across the country
is simply not viable. Fletcher delivers this information in a quote that he doesnt fully discuss; indeed,
his reliance on quotes to make the main points about EVs limitations implies that he doesnt wish to
acknowledge these data but feels impelled to do so. Yet serious questions remain. With a longer
range, consumers might be more willing to rely on electric cars since they would need to go through
the recharge process less often. Yet with, for instance, a 100-mile range limit, would consumers put
up with a several-hour recharging process? Fletcher quotes an IBM researcher: A practical electric
car will need a lot more mileage than is possible with lithium-ion batteries. Fletcher then suggests
that more research might deliver a technological breakthrough, and also points out that cars such as
the Chevy Volt, with both a gasoline and electrical engine, dont face this problem.
Even without a major new breakthrough in battery technology, however, I think concerns over range
and charge limitations are surmountable. Consumers (at least American consumers) may gripe, but I
believe we are more flexible and practical than some stereotypes portray. True, as drivers, well need
to plan ahead a bit more to make sure our EVs are fully charged, but were more than capable. After
all, we already do that with cell phones and smart phones. Further, once recycling becomes a habit
most people gladly, or at least dutifully, do it; the same will likely happen with the extra planning an
electric engine requires. And once they drive one, consumers just love the electric car (which
matches my experience with the electric lawn mower, which far outperforms the gas kind except for
that annoying cord). Furthermore, gasoline is bound to get significantly more expensive, particularly
with demand growing in China and India.
One other question is about pollution associated with batteries, both at the start of their life cycle
through the mining of lithium and at the end through their disposal. However, this is a relatively minor
problem when compared to the huge environmental drawbacks of the gasoline engine. Lithium is
one of the most abundant elements, and thus should not pose the mining challenges of more exotic,
difficult-to-reach substances. The current mining process does take large amounts of water, and
lithium can be hazardous, but is less so than many other minerals (cnet, 2008; Time, 2009). Indeed,
Lithium mining seems to compare quite favorably to the increasingly dirty and dangerous process of
extracting oil. Regarding disposal, lithium batteries no longer potent enough for EVs can still be used
to store electricity from our growing use of intermittent sources, notably wind and solar. Furthermore,
according to Billmaier, lithium-ion batters are more than 95% recyclable.

Does this mean that the EV is poised to solve our transit worries? Billmaier thinks so, explaining that
electric vehicles will enable us to continue our uniquely American love affair with the automobile,
which along with the nations highway system, is the backbone of our culture and economy. This
romanticizing of a certain kind of consumerism suggests the possibility of a rebound effect, in which
people are lulled into thinking that EVs have zero impact and use them unceasingly. With a hugely
expanding number of automobiles globally, this means a continuing climate change impact, at least
until the day that all our electricity becomes renewable. And all the other impacts of carseven
clean onesmust be accounted for. Energy and resources are used in manufacturing them. Even
worse is the need for an ever-expanding network of roads, meaning additional environmental
burdens in habitat destruction and fragmentation and in impervious surface. Furthermore, as Smart
Growth advocates know, new roads induce greater use of cars and more traffic. Witness Beijings
recent nine-day traffic jam (Los Angeles Times, 2010).
So the EV holds great promise, but is no panacea. We will still need to greatly improve transit and
reduce our sprawling growth patterns. Technology alone will not save us. The EV, then, is likely to
replace gasoline engines with clean, efficient transportation, but is only one of a panoply of tools,
social and technological, in building a sustainable society.

Electric vehicles have been in existence since the creation of the automobile in the 1800s, but fossil fuel
powered vehicles have always been the dominant powertrain technology for mass-produced automobiles.
Pollution, climate change, resource availability, and geopolitical concerns have led to a renewed interest in
alternative engine technologies and electric vehicles are at the forefront of this debate because there are
no direct emissions from the vehicle during its operation. However, an electric vehicle does not operate in
a vacuum. Rather, it is part of a complex system that includes the production of the vehicles and the
generation of power to charge the batteries in the vehicle. The proposed project is an economic and
environmental sustainability assessment of electric vehicle systems. There are three main questions:
What are the conditions under which the electric vehicle system produces a net environmental benefit
relative to existing vehicle systems?
What are the conditions under which the electric vehicle system is economically competitive with existing
vehicle systems?
What is the uncertainty associated with these conditions and how can knowledge of that uncertainty be
leveraged in strategic decisions around the development of electric vehicle systems?
These questions will be explored using a research plan that is organized into the three elements:
Economic and environmental analysis of electric vehicles. Research in this task will be conducted using a
dynamic life cycle perspective of a fleet of electric vehicles implemented over time compared against a
baseline of an existing fleet dominated by combustion engine vehicles. Four life cycle phases will be
considered: materials production, vehicle production, use, and end-of-life. The task consists of four main
activities: scenario definition, model development, data collection, and scenario analysis.

Economic and environmental analysis of power generation. The main purpose of this task is to develop
and implement an integrated environmental and economical assessment of power generation in Portugal
first and then other contexts as well, addressing dynamics, variability and uncertainty. The overall
objective is to perform a holistic evaluation of the LC aspects (direct and indirect) associated with the
increased power generating capacity required to power EVs.
Synthesis and decision analysis. This task will build on the analyses developed in Tasks 1 and 2 in order
to provide an overall evaluation for each potential scenario by developing a multi-criteria decision analysis
(MCDA) framework taking into account uncertainty and the viewpoints of multiple stakeholders
(automotive manufacturers, infrastructure developers, power generators, policymakers, and consumers).
The primary outcome from this work will be strategies for developing economically and environmentally
sustainable electric vehicle systems. The audience for these strategies will include all stakeholders within
the system: automotive manufacturers and suppliers, infrastructure developers, power generators, and
policymakers. The strategies will include recommendations on vehicle technology and manufacturing as a
function of context. Furthermore, there will be methodological contributions in the diverse areas of life
cycle assessment, economic technological forecasting, and decision analysis, and in mechanisms for
integrating these topics.

One of the more fashionable concepts that one hears among people who regard themselves as
environmentalists, is that the world would be much better off if only we could make the electric car
mainstream. Without having engaged in any kind of systematic survey among serious thinkers on the
environment, I certainly feel this is the case, although with a little digging, one can see that this is certainly
not universally held to be the case, especially if one looks in the primary scientific literature.
A recent article in the journal Environmental Science and Technology, for example noted that China
already has 100 million electric vehicles and that the health and climate benefits and deficits of these
vehicles is decidedly mixed, particularly because of the high externalities associated with China's
overwhelming dependence on coal power.
Environ. Sci. Technol., 2012, 46 (4), pp 20182024
The majority of these vehicles are, in fact, electric scooters, and their overall externalities are much
lower than other electric cars, just as motorized scooters powered by gasoline have lower externalities
than gasoline cars.
But China has also been producing and promoting electric cars, as many people in the United States are
also doing, and the authors of this paper examine the externalities of electric cars by analyzing the
primary energy sources China uses to generate electricity.
With the current electric generation mix in China, the authors claim (See Table 1 if you access the original
paper) that for the city of Shanghai, for instance, the death toll associated with PM 2.5(Particulate Matter
approximately 2.5 m in size) resulting from the use of gasoline cars in that each year is about 9 people

per 10 billion km traveled (1,000,000 cars*10,000 km (car-yr) -1, whereas the cost in terms of an electric
car via the same mechanism is thought to be 26 persons deaths resulting from the same number of
kilometers traveled. Included in their calculation is a stochastic factor called the intake fraction, which
accounts for the average distance from a coal plant that provides electricity for Shanghai and the
probability that particulate matter from its exhaust will be deposited in lung tissue. (The intake fractions
units are parts per million.) The intact factor is actually lower for the coal generating units, as they are at
some distance from the city, whereas the gasoline (or diesel) car produces particulates at the point of
use. Nevertheless, there are so many more particulates released with coal than with gasoline that the
electric car actually performs worse than the gasoline car (although better than diesel cars).
If one considers the carbon dioxide cost, the situation represents no spectacular savings either. In
Beijing, the electric car releases as much carbon as a gasoline car getting fuel economy of 9L/100 km (26
mpg), a modest, at best, efficiency number in modern times.
I am a strong advocate of nuclear energy, and regard it as the only source of energy with the right
combinatorial optimization of safety, sustainability, ease of scale up, cost, and environmental impact - the
general public susceptibility to selective attention with respect to the these concerns notwithstanding - that
might have had any reasonable chance at providing a decent lifestyle for the 7 billion people on this
planet, almost all of whom assume their own right to life, and if not to liberty, than certainly to the pursuit
of happiness.
Since it is widely, if wrongly, believed that nuclear energy is only suitable for the generation of electricity,
one might suppose that I would at least be sympathetic, in theory, to the electric car. Afterall, if China
were to succeed at its stated goal of building more nuclear power plants than the rest of the world now
has combined, the health cost and greenhouse external cost would be vastly improved for such cars.
To be perfectly honest, I am not sympathetic to any aspect of the car CULTure, but surely I must believe
that if we must have cars, than electric cars are the way to go. No?
No.
The electric car is no more sustainable than the gasoline or diesel car in my view, and, as is the case with
much hyped wind industry, the reason has to do not so much with the fuel properties as it does with the
metal content of the machinery.
The paper from the primary scientific literature to which I will refer in this document is, as of this writing in
the same journal to which I've referred above (and yes, I do read other journals) and can be found in the
"ASAP" section as of this writing:
Environ.Sci.Tech. May 2013: Potential Environmental and Human Health Impacts of Rechargeable
Lithium Batteries in Electronic Waste

The question here is the same question that people often regard as a show stopper for discussions of
nuclear energy - although the question is trivial for so called "nuclear waste" and is not trivial for almost
anything else - specifically, "what do you do with the waste."
Even if there is enough lithium to displace the 1 billion internal combustion engine cars that now pollute
the earth with electric cars, it is the electronic waste problem - one of the most intractable problems now
faced by humanity - that should dominate the question.
To wit, the authors write as follows:
Rechargeable lithium-based batteries have displaced nickelcadmium and nickel metal hydride batteries
to become the dominant energy supply components in portable consumer electronic products due to Liions superior energy density and slow discharge in idle mode. 1These advantages have also led to the
adoption of lithium batteries in electric vehicles, military, and aerospace applications. Consequently, the
global market for lithium batteries is projected to increase from $7.9 billion in 2008 to $8.6 billion in 2014.1
With a relatively short life span of about 2 to 4 years, rechargeable lithium batteries in portable electronic
devices will contribute substantially to the increasing problem of electronic waste (e-waste), the fastest
growing segment of the U.S. solid waste stream2,3...
...Lithium batteries contain potentially toxic materials including metals, such as copper, nickel,and lead,
and organic chemicals, such as toxic and flammable electrolytes containing LiClO 4, LiBF4, and LiPF6.4
Human and environmental exposures to these chemicals are typically regulated during the manufacture of
lithium batteries through occupational health and safety laws, and potential fire hazards associated with
their transportation are regulated through the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR 173.185),5 but
there is inconsistent policy about the fate of discarded lithium batteries in e-waste that is distributed
internationally.3,5,6 This study focused on metals in three types of batteries entering the waste stream, Liion and Li-poly batteries from older phones and lithium batteries from newer smartphones that are
increasingly entering the waste stream.

It will not serve to repeat all the findings in this paper - one may refer to the original if one is interested but it should suffice to say that the authors conclude as follows:
Results of this research indicate that rechargeable lithium based batteries associated with portable
electronic products are potential sources of hazardous metal pollutants in the environment. These metal
pollutants can adversely impact environmental quality and human health, particularly in regions of the
world that lack infrastructure for solid waste collection, sorting, and recycling. This study has identified
metals, Co, Cu, Ni, and Pb that, under simulated landfill conditions, would leach out concentrations that
would exceed regulatory limits, thereby rendering their respective lithium batteries hazardous under U.S.
federal and state laws. These results call for increased coordination of regulatory policies to support the
recycling of portable rechargeable batteries, and for improved DfE strategies to reduce the levels of
hazardous chemical components of consumer electronic products.

It is interesting to note that this weekend, about 1,000 protesters gathered in the Songjiang district of
Shanghai to protest a plan by Hefei Guoxuan High-tech Power Energy Co Ltd to build a lithium battery
plant there. The protest was made on environmental grounds.
I expect that people will note that many electric cars do not rely on lithium batteries, as the highly
subsidized Tesla car for millionaires and billionaires does, but the question, "what does one do with
(electronic) waste?" applies to all kinds of energy storage devices, even if - especially in connection with
so called "renewable energy" - various kinds of energy storage are assumed to have neutral or negligible
external costs, a claim that is ridiculous even with a cursory review of the thermodynamics of en

Respected chairperson ,judges ,ladies and gentlements .Good evening to everyone


present here today. My name is farhan javed and I am here to speak against the motion
are electric vehicles sustainable?
Electric vehicles have long been advertised as the green answer to the worldss
growing transportation problem as our cities struggle against the effects of global
warming ,smog and air pollution. They also dominate the public area , from celebrities
driving luxury EV to government subsidies and major infrastructure upgrades
encouraging us to go green and buy electric cars .While it is true that running an EV
may seem a greener choice ,there remains some key environmental concerns regarding
the energy sources used to charge EVs, as well as the impacts of vehicle production.
My first argument is related to the popular tag of emission less vehicles that we have
assigned to the electric vehicles .but thats hardly the case. EVs are powered by
electricity over 68 % of which is from fossil fuels in the United States, and the largest
percentage of which is coal-powered . Let me ask you is burning coal , better than
burning gasoline. Calculation have been conducted in this regard . It has been found
that burning the gasoline gives you about twice as much power as burning coal , with
fewer CO2 emissions per MJ of energy . So I can say confidently that coal power is more
detrimental to the environment than gasoline.
The second argument that I would like to put forward questions the actual impact that
an EV can make . electric engines are more efficient than combustion engines. Electric
engines do require less energy to travel the same distance as combustion engines but
let me clear the misconception related to the production of greenhouse gases by both of
them. The more efficient electrical engine saves only about one pound of CO2 entering
the atmosphere compared to traditional engines. The first solution that may come to
your mind regarding the production of energy would be to use renewable source of
energy. Solar cells, a common emissions- free energy choice, are actually very energyintensive to produce and, for the most part, are too slow to power EVs .Solar cells are
products of fossil fuels, and their manufacture releases heavy metals that has as much
global warming potential as greenhouse gases.

Thirdly ,when we look at the greenness of EVs the biggest risk comes from the
environmental impacts over the vehicles entire lifecycle. The production of EVs has
about twice the global warming potential as that of traditional cars. Production of the
batteries is the most significant concern contributing a major 41 % of the global
warming potential.
My fourth argument is that for electric vehicles to be actually sustainable they would
require fast charging and slow discharging cycles. Even with lithium-ion batteries, the
EV still takes several hours to recharge. This can be reduced below twenty minutes with
the highest level of quick charge station, but these are not practical as they need to be
powerful enough to deliver many megawatts quicklyto charge the Tesla in fifteen
minutes, for instance, takes a 200-kilowatt substation. A network of such stations across
the country is simply not viable. The current electric cars that are present in the market
can cost a fortune to purchase. You would need 100000 $ just to be able to purchase an
electric car produced by the tesla. Such high costs reduces its potential. It is not viable
for the common man to expend this much money just on a car.
I would like to conclude by question our stance regarding the environmental impact of
EVs? Can they still be a solution? The problem is the entire EV industry and
infrastructure is being pushed by government mandates and subsidies , not by natural
market demand.